Sputnik V has been authorized for use in 70 countries around the world despite not yet being approved by the U.N. health agency even for emergency use.
Russia is ready to provide up to 300 million doses of its Sputnik V vaccine to the U.N.-backed COVAX initiative, a top Russian official promoting the shot says, even though the World Health Organization hasn’t yet signed off on it and production issues have fanned customers’ concerns worldwide, the Associated Press reports.
Russian Direct Investment Fund CEO Kirill Dmitriev and the World Health Organization had vastly different takes Wednesday on when the Russian vaccine would get WHO’s stamp of approval.
Sputnik V has been authorized for use in 70 countries around the world despite not yet being approved by the U.N. health agency even for emergency use. Some countries, especially in Latin America, have expressed fears lately that they are not getting the vaccine’s second shot in time to properly innoculate their people from COVID-19.
Dmitriev told The Associated Press that the Russian vaccine will be made available to COVAX, the U.N.-backed program designed to share vaccines more evenly around the world, once the shot is approved by the WHO. He said he expects WHO’s approval to come in the next two months. The COVAX program cannot use a vaccine that is not approved by the WHO.
“We believe that we can supply COVAX around 200 million doses a year, 200 to 300 million,” Dmitriev said in an interview. “We just need the WHO approval to work with COVAX.”
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